SSP Board Member and former summer staffer Evan Howington shares why he feels called to give:
By Eleanor Weiss
Winner of the “I Love SSP” Instagram Contest
Every summer when I get home from SSP I’m always asked the same question,
“What is Sierra Service Project and why do I love it so much?”
Well this is my answer. Sierra Service Project is my all time favorite church service trip that allows me to meet new friends, explore my faith, be myself, bond with the amazing Staff, and most importantly help others. Sierra Service Project is not just about doing the work; it’s about getting to know the people and community you’re doing the work for.
Sierra Service Project is not just about doing the work; it’s about getting to know the people and community you’re doing the work for.
We all get to know each other throughout the week and develop a bond that can’t be broken, we have to learn to trust one another and that we will have each other’s backs.
An important part of Sierra Service Project is the amazing Staff, really, they have changed my life. 2013 through 2015 proved to be a really hard time in my life due to a handful of reasons and I felt lost in the world because I was losing myself and who I wanted to be. I remember summer of 2014 I attended Sierra Service Project in Chiloquin Oregon not feeling one hundred percent myself, one night I remember breaking down and in only a few seconds a camper and Staff member ran over and tried to help me calm down, it was when the Staff member asked me “would you like to pray about it?”, did I realize not only do I have these amazing people surrounding me but I have positive loving people that push me in my faith and to be the best that I can be.
So I say this again, Sierra Service Project is not just about doing the work, it’s about creating something beautiful with people that will love and care about one another through it all. Sierra Service Project is my second home and always will be thanks to everyone I have met there. Thanks!
Editor’s Note: Eleanor won our “I Love SSP” Instagram Contest in November. She was awarded a $75 credit in SSP swag from the online store and a feature in our December edition of Inside the Margins. Follow SSP on Instagram for more opportunities like this!
Sarah Reynolds, a youth from Church of the Good Shepherd, shares her top 12 reasons why she loves SSP:
- New friends
- Bonding time with my youth group
- Learning new skills like painting and roofing
- Learning about new people and places
- Yam bread
- It’s the best week of my entire summer
- Meaningful conversations during spiritual sandwich
- Love feast
- The environment of love and acceptance
- Feeling the power of the Spirit through our work, knowing we’re making a difference
Editor’s Note: What are the top 12 things you love about SSP? Share your list on social media and challenge 3 SSP friends. #12xSSP
Forty days before the summer, we will showcase each year of SSP’s history on social media. Starting on May 20 (highlighting 1975) until June 28 when the first summer volunteers of 2015 will arrive at site! To do this, we need your help telling the SSP story.
We are also collecting ALL short stories and artwork about your SSP experiences to publish in the second edition of “Service Is Our Middle Name” in honor of our 40th year of service. All authors/artists will receive a free copy of the 2nd edition!
Email stories and photographs for both of these projects to Megan Walsh.